Connected Objects

MOTI is a little dome that can make you a lot better through habits

editors-choice-300x96The ‘there’s an app for that’ attitude of the modern, smartphone-wielding person makes it seem like the answer to any problem can be downloaded. And while that may be the case for some situations, the majority of people are overloaded with apps, push notifications and other distractions that have proven more easily ignored than anything else.

Smartphones and now wearables compound that problem, aiming to offer accountability and agency and failing to deliver. The team behind the MOTI smart companion for better habits is looking to change how people approach the things they should be doing for better health and happiness. Instead of creating just another reminder app, they’ve instead created a charming physical device that acts as a small, distinct and actionable environmental trigger, satisfying what the brain needs to form a habit: a trigger (check), a routine (by pressing in MOTIs satisfyingly-designed button) and a reward (R2-D2-style bloops and beeps).


Groove learns your habits, keeps you motivated to workout

The Premise. The tech market has spoken, and people want devices that track their physical activity to motivate their workouts. Mobile devices work best when they do more than one thing, however, and so one company is rolling out wearable tech that does more than count burnt calories.

The Product. Groove is a hybrid smartwatch and fitness tracker. The device is worn just like a regular smartwatch, but also can schedule, track, and report workout data both personally and among fitness buddies. With the ActivLite band, notifications can pop up through an attractive light-up band so that owners don’t have to keep checking their watch as if impatiently waiting for something to happen. The Groove can monitor heart rate, observe sleep cycles, is waterproof, features voice commands, and is compatible with both iOS and Android devices.

The Pitch. The image of the Groove is what you would expect from wearable fitness – clean, young, active, and lively. The video does a good job of showing off the different things the device is capable of, and the campaign’s pictures flesh those ideas out by comparing the Groove to seven other popular smart watches and fitness trackers. The team behind Groove want to raise $200,000 to complete the companion app, get Bluetooth certified, and handle the production and distribution of their product beyond the initial crowdfunding step.

The Perks. The Groove Watch is available with app and charger for $179. In addition to the basic black and white colors, an Indiegogo-exclusive gold variant is available for $249. Both rewards will ship in January 2015. For those who want to start meeting goals earlier, a beta version will be out in October for those that pledge $1,499. Those that want to custom the colors and finish of their watch can design their own for $2,499.

The Potential. By integrating smartwatch features, an attractive design, and social tracking and goal-oriented aspects like the Samsung Gear Fit, the Groove lets other people offer something to strive for when outside motivation is needed, and a reason not to take off the device when it feels like a lazy day. While it may not be the most unique in terms of design or style, it bridges two products that are beginning to heat up into one concise, effective package.